The Heart came into this card with a one fight lead. The Brain and the Heart agreed on three of the five fights on the main card. Those three fights would be the only ones that the Brain would get correct. The Heart went a perfect 5-0 while the Brain only went 3-2. That brings the overall records to 56-36 for the Heart and 53-39 for the Brain. Let’s look at the top 5 moments of UFC Fight Night 89:
- Jotko Scores Big KO
Krzysztof Jotko apparently had somewhere else to be Saturday night because he sure made quick work of Tamdan McCrory. Just under a minute into the fight Jotko landed a massive left that sent McCrory to the ground. Jotko followed with a couple more shots to put McCrory out for good. This fight was not only Jotko’s biggest win to date, but it also netted him a $50,000 Performance of the Night bonus as well. Jotko is still only 26 years old and if he can continue to develop his game, he could definitely stick around for quite a while.
- Calderwood Dominates Letourneau
The UFC’s first women’s flyweight bout (between two strawweights) was a lot more one sided than most expected. Valerie Letourneau proved to be tough like always, but Joanne Calderwood always seemed to be one step ahead. Calderwood dropped Letourneau in the first round with a spinning elbow. The punches just kept piling up from there, but it wasn’t until the third round that the damage really started to take its toll. Calderwood landed a big kick to the stomach that had Letourneau turning away and covering up. Calderwood gave chase with punches and kicks. The ref filed to halt the bout so Calderwood continued her attack. She landed another powerful kick that again made Letourneau turn and cover up. Another follow up shot from Calderwood sent Letourneau to the ground and the referee finally stopped the fight. It definitely felt like this fight should’ve been stopped well before it was. Letourneau has now lost two in a row, but I think he job will be safe for now as she always comes to fight and has a ton of heart. It appears the move to Tristar has really paid off for Calderwood. She looked extremely sharp from start to finish. And with two wins in a row she can continue to build herself back up to contender status. Calderwood has called for a fight against Rose Namajunas. That would definitely be an exciting fight to watch and it would actually make some sense assuming Namajunas gets past Kowalkiewicz at the end of July.
- Bosse and O’Connell Throw Down in Fight of the Night
Many people (myself included) figured that the fight between Steve Bosse and Sean O’Connell would produce fireworks and likely end up with a huge KO and a Performance of the Night bonus. I don’t think very many people would’ve ever guessed that both guys would somehow remain standing at the end of a three round slugfest, but that’s exactly what happened. Both fighters traded blows the entire fight. There were moments where it looked like it might be over, but Bosse and O’Connell pushed through and managed to keep going. In the end, Bosse was awarded the decision, but both guys should be happy with their performances and they were awarded Fight of the Night honors to show for their entertaining battle. I definitely think Bosse would struggle against any of the top 15 in the division, but he has serious power and is an extremely entertaining fighter to watch.
- Cerrone Puts on a Show against Cote
Although Donald Cerrone technically already made his welterweight debut, it happened against a lightweight. This fight with Patrick Cote was his first true test in the division and he passed the test with flying colors. Cote is always an extremely tough opponent and I expected him to make this a very competitive fight. Cerrone was able to score a takedown to start the fight and made sure he got off to a quick start. He never let up from there. Cerrone was continually the quicker fighter and landed the more powerful shots as well. He was able to drop Cote several times, but wasn’t able to fully capitalize until midway through the third round. A big combination hurt Cote and Cerrone followed up with some more punches to the head to get the impressive TKO win. Cerrone has now won two in a row and could likely get a top 15 opponent in his next fight, and in true Cerrone fashion, he called for a spot on the mega UFC 200 card in three weeks.
- Thompson Cruises Past MacDonald
I definitely didn’t think Stephen Thompson’s win over Johny Hendricks was a fluke, but I wasn’t ready to pencil him in for a win against Rory MacDonald. I knew Thompson had the potential, but I also knew that Tristar fighters show up with the perfect strategy for defeating their opponent. However, once the fight started Thompson quickly took over and never let up. Rory is never an easy fight, but Thompson made it look effortless. I’ve never seen MacDonald more baffled in a fight. Thompson was much quicker and was able to control the pace and pop in and out of range before MacDonald was able to score. In the end two of the judges awarded Thompson the sweep 50-45 and the third judge somehow gave Thompson the fight by a 48-47 score. There was definitely a small case for a 49-48 Thompson score, but I really didn’t see any room for a 48-47 scorecard at all. MacDonald has now lost two in a row. That will definitely sting for a while, but it certainly doesn’t set him too far back considering those two losses have come from Robbie Lawler and Thompson. Rory will definitely need a solid rebound performance to avoid a tailspin. Thompson picked up his second win in a row over a top 5 opponent. His next fight should no doubt be against the winner of the Robbie Lawler vs. Tyron Woodley title fight at UFC 201.
Be sure to check back in two and a half weeks when the UFC returns with three action-packed cards in three days with UFC Fight Night 90, TUF 23 Finale, and finally capping it off with possibly the most stacked UFC card ever, UFC 200.
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